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Bar graph showing share of workers with family member enrolled in one or more public programs by industry. Restaurant and food services is nearly 45%.
Walmart isn't the only corporate giant relying on government assistance to make up for the low, low wages it pays its workers. According to a new report from the University of California-Berkeley Labor Center, 52 percent of front-line fast food workers are on some form of public assistance, at a cost of nearly $7 billion a year. And the 10 largest fast food companies account for $3.8 billion of that, the National Employment Law Project estimates.

The UC-Berkeley study only looks at participation in Medicaid and the Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP), the Earned Income Tax Credit, food stamps, and Temporary Assistance for Needy Families; if it included all government programs, such as child-care subsidies and reduced price school lunches, the total would be higher. That's because fast food restaurants pay wages so low that even the families of full-time fast food workers rely on public programs—the median income for people working more than 10 hours a week 27 or more weeks per year in nonmanagerial fast food jobs is $8.69 an hour.

The companies benefiting from all that low-wage labor and the food stamps and health care assistance needed for workers to get by are doing just fine. Last year, the 10 largest fast food companies earned $7.44 billion in profits, paid their top executives $52.7 million, and distributed $7.7 billion in dividends and buybacks, according to NELP. Meanwhile:

Table showing the estimated annual cost of public assistance to employees at the 10 largest fast food companies: McDonald's, Yum Brands, Subway, Burger King, Wendy's, Dunkin' Donuts, Dairy Queen, Little Caesars, Sonic, Domino's. McDonald's at $1.2 billion
Like Walmart, McDonald's and Taco Bell and Domino's are profiting directly off of government programs for low-income people. Taxpayers are subsidizing wages at these immensely profitable companies, while Republicans in Congress block the minimum wage increase that would raise many fast food workers out of poverty.

Originally posted to Daily Kos Labor on Tue Oct 15, 2013 at 10:28 AM PDT.

Also republished by In Support of Labor and Unions, Daily Kos Classics, and Daily Kos.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Wal-Marting everything and everyone (15+ / 0-)

    the backward cost-shifting of modern Capitalism

    Warning - some snark may be above‽ (-9.50; -7.03)‽ eState4Column5©2013 "I’m not the strapping young Muslim socialist that I used to be" - Barack Obama 04/27/2013

    by annieli on Tue Oct 15, 2013 at 10:34:55 AM PDT

    •  Now, now. (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Utahrd, Just Bob, spacecadet1

      Our Next President served for six years on the Walmart Board of Directors.

      That's long enough to realize whether accepting the gig was a mistake.  She obviously never came to that realization.

      All hail Walmart!

      Dogs from the street can have all the desirable qualities that one could want from pet dogs. Most adopted stray dogs are usually humble and exceptionally faithful to their owners as if they are grateful for this kindness. -- H.M. Bhumibol Adulyadej

      by corvo on Thu Oct 17, 2013 at 07:09:16 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  What do you mean? (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        daeros, spacecadet1, ArcticStones

        Elizabeth Warren never served on the Walmart Board of Directors.

        Hillary is so last year.

        Carbon dioxide in the atmosphere is now 400ppm. That is "Climate Cluster Chaos". (hat tip to JeffW for CCC)

        by Zinman on Thu Oct 17, 2013 at 09:46:48 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  please let it be so. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Zinman

          http://www.actblue.com/page/accountabilitynow If the dnc dscc or dccc send you mailers, send that link back to them and tell them you won't send money to people who defend democrats who betray progressive principals!

          by daeros on Fri Oct 18, 2013 at 03:30:00 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  Warren for Treasury or Federal Reserve (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Zinman

          Sorry, but Hillary Clinton is electable to President, whereas Warren currently is not. Regrettable but true.

          I would be more than content to see Elizabeth Warren serve as Treasury Secretary or Chairman of the Federal Reserve under President Hillary Clinton.

      •  The States need bill back rights. (0+ / 0-)

        Bill these companies for the cost of assisting their employees.

        GOP Wars against: Iran, Iraq, Afghanistan, Immigrants, Mexicans, Blacks, Gays, Women, Unions, Workers, Unemployed, Voters, Elderly, Kids, Poor, Sick, Disabled, Dying, Lovers, Kindness, Rationalism, Science, Sanity, Reality.

        by SGWM on Fri Oct 18, 2013 at 08:51:39 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Do you mean the handmaiden of Wall Street HRC? (0+ / 0-)

        guess she's got all the crooked bases covered.

        GOP Wars against: Iran, Iraq, Afghanistan, Immigrants, Mexicans, Blacks, Gays, Women, Unions, Workers, Unemployed, Voters, Elderly, Kids, Poor, Sick, Disabled, Dying, Lovers, Kindness, Rationalism, Science, Sanity, Reality.

        by SGWM on Fri Oct 18, 2013 at 08:52:50 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  why is this the employers responsibility? (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      daeros

      Basically there's two ways you can raise the standards for low-wage workers: you can literally raise their wage or you can tax everyone and use that money to give them money and benefits.

      So I guess I look at the high-tech company I work for. We all make a lot of money since that's the kind of business we are in. Raising the minimum wage doesn't effect us at all. It does for sure effect the Wal-Marts and the McDonalds of the world. So minimum wage laws implicitly are advantageous to high-wage industries given that the alternative is to tax everyone. Why should the government prefer industries like that?

      I guess really my problem is that your comment and this blog is more philosophical. It seems to show a sort of thinking where companies are expected to be good feudal lords to their serfs/employees.  In my opinion it is the responsibility of society itself to see that everyone has a minimum standard of living. It's not McDonald's responsibility to look after 'their' employees, it everyone's job.

      Now I understand the political realities. The US is a puritanical society where work is king, so we aren't going to have basic income here anytime soon, providing even minimal services like health insurance and food stamps are a constant struggle. (Earned income tax credit is sort of a loop hole we have found to this thinking and should be expanded!) Minimum wage is politically a lot more feasible. I get that. But I think we on the left should see it as an inferior compromise. And shaming companies for having employees who take advantage of the programs we fight for? What is that about??

      •  When "society" - i.e., taxpayers - (0+ / 0-)

        get their fair share cut of the tax-subsidized, tax-incentivized and tax-sheltered profits these companies make, then we'll talk. What you're advocating is that tax payers bear these companies' costs of doing business then let them walk off and party hearty with all the profits. Fuck that noise.

        In my opinion it is the responsibility of society itself to see that everyone has a minimum standard of living.

        Man's capacity for justice makes democracy possible, but man's inclination to injustice makes democracy necessary. - Reinhold Niebuhr

        by penelope pnortney on Tue Mar 24, 2015 at 02:45:31 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Totally agree with your comment: (0+ / 0-)
        In my opinion it is the responsibility of society itself to see that everyone has a minimum standard of living. It's not McDonald's responsibility to look after 'their' employees, it everyone's job.
        Minimum wage laws do not solve the larger problem, nor do labor unions. Don't get me wrong, I think that the way things are currently wired, both are essential. And that's the problem.

        Here's a radical, way-outside-the-box idea, to stimulate discussion about what is possible. Some of this is actually being implemented in other countries.

        Every US citizen receives $30k annually, with the amount totally paid for through business taxes. That is capitalism creating its own healthy markets. Businesses have no tax obligations beyond that.

        Personal taxes pay for all the goods and services that people, not businesses, actually need and use. Corporate personhood is forever revoked, to codify the distinction between people and economic constructs. No need to pretend that a corporation has a soul. Besides, a well-managed larger corporation is well represented by a thousand or more souls working within it.

        Through voting and civic participation, people collectively determine the annual number. $30k? 40k? That puts people squarely in the role of deciding what kind of society we want to live in. Businesses simply must pay their share to comply with this.

        This is a starting point for other discussions like universal versus employer-sponsored healthcare, and the scope and focus of necessary social services.

        Crazy, I know. But as our current system is certifiably insane, why not thoughtfully explore alternatives?

        Community is good… Society is good… 'Isms' are fear tactics.

        by Skyprogress on Tue Mar 24, 2015 at 04:48:15 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  I'd Like To Supersize An Order Of Subsidies... (0+ / 0-)

      to go with the order of fake Poutrage!

      And can you make that 'to go'? (To hell?)

      "Buh But! These heavily subsidized jobs were never meant to replace manufacturing, union supported jobs that we got rid of!"

  •  This is a disgrace (23+ / 0-)

    There is no way that anyone should be earning so little from a job in a first-world country that they need so much social assistance on top of that.  This is pure corporate welfare.

    What bugs me is that this is so easy to argue against.  Raise wages to a living wage?  "Oh, but then they'll just charge higher prices!"  But let's face it--you're paying those higher prices already, except indirectly in the form of higher taxes (or more debt as is the case now).  By having it directly in their wages then it forces a business model where the customers of that product/service has to pay enough to support those workers.  This makes a sustainable business model.  Those that are not sustainable should be allowed to fail and replaced bythose who can do it.

    This is actually analogous to the health insurance debate, where you argue that it gets rid of freeloaders creating a tax burden on everyone else.

    The problem is that there is a feedback loop.  People have their wages driven down, and so become afraid that higher prices will make it harder for them to get by.  So they resist anything that they hear may raise prices because even though they themselves will earn more from their jobs, overall they may not bring home any more money since their corresponding benefits would drop.  Corporate America has greedily pushed the system to this state of existence, and now it is a trap that will require tremendous political courage to escape.

    •  The REAL problem is . . . (0+ / 0-)

      why in the world does anyone eat at these places?  

      •  The real problem is... (0+ / 0-)

        Why does anyone vote for the GOtP that causes these problems?

        No country can be both ignorant and free - Thomas Jefferson

        by fjb on Thu Mar 26, 2015 at 11:45:59 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  McDonalds Gives Me A Stomach Ache Every Time (0+ / 0-)

        so I will never eat there again, & anyway I cannot afford 'fast-food'.

        They used to be good though, back in the 60's.

        I kinda like Arby's but now you can buy their curly-fries in the store.

        Wendy's has a chicken sandwich for a buck.

        I worked in high end restaurants for 30 years, so I don't think much of fast food.

        The problem with Government programs is that they get scammed by moneyed interests...SNAP is intertwined with the entire food-chain/ag interests.

        But the GOP wants to just trash it, with no thought as to the economic consequences.

    •  Deficit reduction measure: Raise the minimum wage! (0+ / 0-)

      The Democratic Party should immediately propose an increase in the Minimum Wage.

      Most importantly, this should be presented not just as "economic democracy" or "social justice", but as a deficit reduction measure.

      It is unconscionable that Walmart, McDonald’s and Burger King et al, set wages so low that a married couple (both working there full time) cannot subsist on that but need government welfare to make ends meet.

      Because these corporations are essentially placing a burden on taxpayers and driving the budget deficit and national debt.

      Raising the minimum wage will also lower the disparity between wages and welfare. (Republicans and Fox have pointed to the small gap, but used it to argue that welfare benefits are too high!)

      .
      Everyone, including the Republican Party want deficit reduction measures. Well here is the golden opportunity.

      So my suggestion is: Change the narrative and demand an increase in the minimum wage -- in order to reduce the deficit!

  •  Makes no sense (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    lina, MGross, rebel ga

    So let me get this straight.

    McDonald's employees do a low skill, low wage job and receive $1.2 billion in social benefits.  

    How exactly is this a subsidy to McDonalds?   If McDonald's didn't employ these workers wouldn't they receive even more public benefits?

    And, if they raised the wages of these employees wouldn't they hire fewer of them?  So, while the public benefits paid to the reamining workers would decline, wouldn't there be fewer employees who would, in fact, be receiving greater benefits because they couldn't get jobs in the first place?

    You can reasonably argue that the minimum wage needs to be increased, but the argument you raise is beyond weak.

    •  The idea is that workers are a fixed cost (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Puddytat

      but they are not and if profits were to decrease by increased wages then the employer will make due with fewer workers.  The remaining workers will just need to work faster because of the smaller workforce which will be tough in a business that is already pretty fast.  Yes the minimum wage is not a livable wage but I do not think that is McDonald's fault.

    •  Nope. (24+ / 0-)

      Raising the minimum wage does not cause job loss, as we've seen repeatedly when states raised their minimums. So your premise is just flat wrong.

      Sorry, I guess I was assuming too much basic understanding of how low-wage industries function for someone with your, uh, concerns.

      •  Snide, and unnecessary (0+ / 0-)

        The "uh, concerns" is a cheap shot.

        And, the likely result of raising the minimum wage in the fast food industry was outlined in a 9/21 article in the Kos:

        San Francisco-based robotics startup, Momentum Machines aims to revolutionize the fast food industry with an automated burger machine. While preparing for the launch of their new restaurant chain, they don’t have to worry about potential chefs because they plan to start the world’s first “smart restaurant” chain where all cooking is done entirely by robots. The company proudly boasts on its product page: “Our alpha machine replaces all of the hamburger line cooks in a restaurant. It does everything employees can do except better.”

        Want a better wage than McD's then leave McD's.

        •  Easier said than done in this economy (17+ / 0-)

          The fact that you don't see that is an example of unexamined privilege.

          I've tried explaining that to my parents and they make the same arguments that you do.  Sorry if I would like to get off government social nets and be able to pay my bills.  I find I may actually be more of a productive citizen that way.  

          Poor folks aren't poor because they're lazy.  They're poor because of corporate greed.

          •  Crap (0+ / 0-)

            Unexamined privilege?

            Never said poor folks were lazy, though many are.  Just as many of the children of the wealthy were born on third base and think they hit a triple.

            But to say that all the poor are simply poor because of corporate greed demonstrates that your world view has in all likelihood shaped in some university classroom that maybe someday you'll actually have to leave.

            And maybe, when you've worked in crap jobs, to struggle to save some money and to learn what it takes to make a better life for yourself you won't just point fingers at some perceived bogeyman, but actually understand how the world works.

            Meanwhile, unless you're in your 40's and your parents are in their 70's I really have a problem with being lectured to by a kid who has all the answers.  And, if I misread your situation I apologize.  But, I'm guessing I've got you pegged pretty cleanly.

            •  I'm 35 (16+ / 0-)

              Nice try, though.

              I have worked in low-wage jobs.  They were abusive to me in terms of pay, benefits, and hours.  It sucked.  I have mental health issues and I'm mildly autistic.  I'm stuck living with my parents because I don't have the money to live anywhere else and have been trying to find a job.  I have a Bachelor's in Graphic Design and an Associates in Web Design and Interactive Media.  I think that merits something, don't you?

            •  Ok, so you ARE a right wing troll. (8+ / 0-)

              That's resolved then.

              "But the traitors will pretend / that it's gettin' near the end / when it's beginning" P. Ochs

              by JesseCW on Tue Oct 15, 2013 at 12:32:44 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

            •  The age of your responder is not a part of (6+ / 0-)

              the equation. You're becoming extremely close to the line of "dick" as in "Don't be one."

              Argue the merits or the points or the issues, but do not attack, sneer, and slur the people with whom you discuss.

              We don't care, at all, if you

              really have a problem with being lectured to by a kid who has all the answers.
              Guessing who people are or where they come from is simply not a part of the equation. You don't know anything about anyone which hasn't been said specifically. Guessing and making up back stories is just offensive.
              I'm guessing I've got you pegged pretty cleanly.
              I've tried to be civil in my post to you, but I have to admit that I find your tactics extremely annoying. Frankly, they're very close to being over the line.

              "The law is meant to be my servant and not my master, still less my torturer and my murderer." -- James Baldwin. July 11, 1966.

              by YucatanMan on Tue Oct 15, 2013 at 12:47:32 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

            •  A lot of us have worked in "crap jobs" for (5+ / 0-)

              minimum wage (and lower), thanks.  For years.

              Have also worked for both small businesses (helping one become more productive and successfully grow into modern times), plus some of the largest multinational corporations in the world.

              I've also been a mouth-breathing Republican.

              Been - and am - friends with folks in various echelons of wealthy and societal status, over the years.

              So, if you want to try lecturing someone about reality with a highly sensitive chip on your shoulder, maybe try me.

              Just make sure you understand the history of "robber barons" and related societal expectations before the New Deal with respect to your posts above, please.  Otherwise, you're probably just posturing.

              "So, please stay where you are. Don't move and don't panic. Don't take off your shoes! Jobs is on the way."

              by wader on Tue Oct 15, 2013 at 12:53:47 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

            •  Extraordinarily rude (5+ / 0-)

              And ignorant, too.  
              You aren't going to get lectured by too many "kids" here, buster. Check the demographics for site usage.

              “Texas is a so-called red state, but you’ve got 10 million Democrats here in Texas. And …, there are a whole lot of people here in Texas who need us, and who need us to fight for them.” President Obama

              by Catte Nappe on Tue Oct 15, 2013 at 12:58:10 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

            •  Infinitygoddess has a point (3+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              CaffeineNation, fleisch, JosephK74

              I'm over 50, I've worked the low wage jobs, worked my way up the corporate ladder, and I know how it works from the inside.  I've seen it:  corporations are obligated to their shareholders.  It's the job of a corporate executive to keep the shareholders happy.  If he or she does a good job, he'll get rich, therefore it's in his or her personal interest to do this.  They do one thing and one thing only:  generate profit for the shareholders.  They do this by keeping costs as low as possible, increasing market share, growing sales, etc.  They fight tooth and nail to trim every nickel off of costs.  They do not have any obligations to pay a living or fair wage, therefore they will not do it.  

              They pay taxes to support infrastructure, minimum wage, unemployment insurance premiums, social security, workers compensation premiums, etc. because they have to by law.  If they are organized, they pay for the wages and benefits because they have to.  If they did not have to by law or by union contract they would not do it.  Period.  

              Years ago, I was a human resources director.  I've been asked by a corporate president:  How much will it cost me to comply with the law, and how much is the penalty if I don't?  No joke.

              These corporate representatives will hire lobbyists, make claims, do anything to shape public opinion and get legislation written to keep things in their favor.  Wouldn't you, for 24 million a year in personal income?

              The arguments being thrown out there against a living wage are pure baloney.  It can be done, and the middle class would barely notice a nickel or a quarter increase for the price of that burger.

            •  Someone your own size (3+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              bgblcklab1, fleisch, JosephK74

              Lionlaw, I'm 49, and my parents are dead. I went to college, got a degree. I worked in office administration for twenty-odd years, made at least halfway decent money most of the time. Never quite as much as I needed but with a second job I could get by when I was single, and when I was married there were two full-time paychecks coming in.

              In my early forties dropped out of the workforce to care for my aged father at home for four years because it was better for him than the nursing home he was in at the time.

              I returned to the workforce at the tail-end of 2010, and found it had become a wasteland. Nothing but fast-food and temporary office jobs as far as the eye could see. I've had nothing BUT temp work since then, and only TWICE have I made over $10 per hour on an assignment -- a one-week gig covering someone's sick leave, and a two-week data-analysis project that paid me top dollar but was limited to only that duration.

              I've worked crap jobs. I supported myself on fast-food, waitressing and retail when I was in my early twenties and living on my own while putting myself through school. Sometimes I lived on ramen noodles all week. But at least back then I could do it. I wouldn't dream of trying that now. The young can get away with that better than I can.

              I'm fully qualified to tell you that 99% of the poor people I know -- and I know a LOT -- aren't lazy. They're hard workers. I'm one of them these days. And corporate greed has EVERYTHING to do with it for most of us. Even office jobs that used to pay $15 or more per hour to new hires around here now pay them $10 or less. SOMEONE'S certainly being greedy, and it isn't the workers who just want to be able to earn a viable living.

            •  Wow, what an (0+ / 0-)

              interesting universe of supermen you must live among.  Riddle me this, where exactly is someone supposed to find the time and energy to pull the,selves out of this sort of labor when they're worked to the bone just to pay for rent, food, insurance, and transportation?  There's a reason that upward mobility from states of poverty is almost nil, and that reason has nothing to do with being lazy or people failing to apply themselves.

            •  Crap (0+ / 0-)

              Lionlaw I think I have you pegged. You are in your 70's probably an attorney, came from a "financially comfortable" family, went to a decent law school in the the 60's avoided the draft or were a member of JAG. The most difficult job you ever had was during summer break in college. The 60's were a period of economic boom with lots of jobs available and the ability to negotiate wages and salaries (with and without organized labor assistance). To arrogantly infer that during a time of GLOBAL economic depression that it is an employees lot to suck it up and take whatever crumb corporate firms are providing or go elsewhere is disgusting.
              Oh yeah, before you play the "young whippersnapper" routine on me; Goethe Universitat Frankfurt am Main 1969.

          •  Shout it from the rooftops (12+ / 0-)
            Poor folks aren't poor because they're lazy.  They're poor because of corporate greed
        •  And someone will have to mop the floors and (9+ / 0-)

          load the machine.

          And that person will still deserve a living wage.

          Want a better wage than McD's then leave McD's.
          How can anyone as concretely opposed to the very concept of labor organization as you are claim to have any interest at all in electing More and Better Democrats?

          "But the traitors will pretend / that it's gettin' near the end / when it's beginning" P. Ochs

          by JesseCW on Tue Oct 15, 2013 at 12:29:40 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  Automation is not a minimum wage issue (n/t) (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          gerrilea, Tonedevil

          "So, please stay where you are. Don't move and don't panic. Don't take off your shoes! Jobs is on the way."

          by wader on Tue Oct 15, 2013 at 12:45:12 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  That's another anachronism in our economy - ... (0+ / 0-)

          automation! Just like retail checkers and typists and all kinds of other jobs now or soon to be obsolete. We are automating these low wage jobs getting faster, cheaper, better productivity and quality.

          So, sure your small local employer - employee scope says leave the obsolete job. Of course, absolutely the right advice to the individual. But what about the macro policy level? But what's a country of 350mil people to do?

          What changes can be made, what change must be made, to the US economy, education, laws, taxes, finances, immigrations, etc. to accommodate today,  a very different mix of facts of demographics, labor orgs, capital flows, economy, and globalization?  

        •  Will you hire me at my previous salary? (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Involuntary Exile, andalusi

          You do understand that I was a manager of regional C-Store that went bankrupt in 2008 after the CEO and the "administrative executives" intentionally ran it into the ground forcing it into bankruptcy.  Leaving themselves cushy little severance packages that were 22 times more than I made in an entire year...and the damn bankruptcy court approved their payouts!

          Since that time I spent over 2 yrs searching for a job, I got one, that's right, one interview for a part-time position with less than 20 hrs a week...when they reviewed my experience (20+ yrs managing people and businesses), they didn't hire me.  

          Two and a half years later, I got a job at Avis, making $9 an hour.  I'm still there, why?  

          BECAUSE THERE ARE NO F*%#!?! JOBS!

          Your elitist statements tells me you've never worked in the private sector...EVER!

          "Work hard and you'll get ahead in America" was the motto I was raised with...WELL, hon, I'm here to tell you working hard gets you nowhere unless you're a white male.

          Do you know what I do for that $9 an hour?  MORE than I did 30 yrs ago as a cashier in a grocery store while I was in High School!  If you don't hit their ever changing "goals", you're badgered, harassed, threatened, written up, given crappy hours UNTIL YOU QUIT!. Why, because they won't pay unemployment!  

          And you do understand that I made $2.85 in 1980 and in real dollars, that translates to less than I'm making today.

          -7.62; -5.95 The scientists of today think deeply instead of clearly. One must be sane to think clearly, but one can think deeply and be quite insane.~Tesla

          by gerrilea on Tue Oct 15, 2013 at 01:42:23 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  Reasonable rases in minimum wages do not cause (0+ / 0-)

        meaningful  job losses.

        Is $500/hour going to cause job losses? Yes.  Those who are not worth 500/hour will not be employed.

        So now that we got the pointless hyperbole out of the way.

        Yes raising minimum wage will cause job losses. But the the question is, is it worth it.  Right now I would say absolutely yes.  

        The way we as a nation are operating tends to encourage cheap over quality. If we force corporations to pay a higher wage, than we will also by proxy get some higher quality(If they are paying for it they may was well get their moneys worth) . A little of a forced paradigm shift is not a bad thing.

        I like the examples used in this post.

        http://en.wikipedia.org/...

        McDonalds is making around 5 ish billion a year. They can provide the extra billion or so to increase the standard of living of their employees.

    •  ^^^ This makes no sense ^^^ (18+ / 0-)

      Or is intentionally blockheaded.

      Answering your second question first, the number of employees working in any given fast food restaurant at any given time is a function of customer demand for the food product being sold, not on labor costs. It takes a certain minimum number of employees to operate any given restaurant, and below that number the restaurant cannot fill customer orders. For example, if your restaurant experiences a rush of 100 customers in 20 minutes and it requires 10 employees to clear those customers within 3 minutes of each order being placed, you cannot reduce the number of employees without increasing the time to clear each order. At some point you increase the customers' wait time to the point they are no longer willing to wait for their order to be filled and will frequent another establishment instead. So, no, they cannot hire fewer employees and maintain their level of sales.

      In answer to your first question, each and every one of us who pays taxes provides the basic social safety net for those who do not earn enough to sustain themselves with the most basic food, shelter, and medical care. If wage earners are working full time it is morally reprehensible that their wages alone cannot sustain them. We, as a people, are not willing to stand idly by while working people and their children starve in the street. Corporations know this and take advantage of us by paying the lowest possible wage, letting the rest of us make up the shortfall while they pocket immorally large profits. That is how we collectively subsidize the fast food industry and all industries that pay less than a living wage. Is the full time labor of any wage earner truly of so little value that after forty hours of work they should not be entitled to freedom from hunger, disease and destitution while their overlords are entitled to tens of $millions in compensation?

      Never has it been proved that increasing the minimum wage increases unemployment. In fact, it has a positive impact as those increased wages are spent within the community. Furthermore, increasing the minimum wage decreases the federal deficit by increasing the tax base and decreasing the amount needed to fund our social safety net. That alone should have deficit hawks cheering for an increase.

      "Some folks rob you with a six-gun, some rob you with a fountain pen." - Woody Guthrie

      by Involuntary Exile on Tue Oct 15, 2013 at 11:44:00 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Great Reply Involuntary Exile!! (3+ / 0-)
      •  econ 101 (0+ / 0-)
        Answering your second question first, the number of employees working in any given fast food restaurant at any given time is a function of customer demand for the food product being sold, not on labor costs
        Supply & Demand.  If they have to pay employees $200/hour you wont be getting any service any time soon at Micky D's.

        Ive never done this in IRL

        but some time ago I remember doing an home work problem finding the profit maximizing number of employees at a fast food chain, assuming that employees cost X/hour, can flip x burgers an hour and customers get angry and leave if they have to wait over a certain amount of time.

        and yes the results did depend on the labor costs.

        Being pro raising the minimum wage does not require you to ignore the basic tenants of economics.

        "If wage earners are working full time it is morally reprehensible that their wages alone cannot sustain them."

        No its not. Some people cannot earn (in the true sense of the word) enough to survive.

        We SHOULD support them and it is OK for companies to profit off the. The question is not black and white. Its what is the proper balance.

    •  Imagine McDonald's out of the market (8+ / 0-)

      Suddenly there is a massive void in the restuarant market.  Imagine a new fast food joint--McIntyre's--opens up and pays their workers a living wage.   They have a better business model and can be profitable even with higher costs.  Taxpayers are off the hook, workers have a better job, and we all live happily ever after.  The end.

      But this doesn't happen because the McDonald's business model is allowed to continue based on their workers getting so much of their income from the gov't.  The conservatives like to complain about government distorting the markets.  Sometimes it is true, and this is an example of it.  Without the benefits these workers would not be able to survive by working at McDoanld's and would either strike for better wages or would move on, leaving McDonald's unable to find adequate numbers or quality of workers.

      If McDonald's was forced to pay more for labor I doubt they would hire fewer workers.  If they could get by with fewer workers they already would be.  A large enough increase in labor costs could lead to more automation, but the kind of industry they are in does not make this very practical.

    •  McDonalds would be thrilled if their workers were (8+ / 0-)

      coming in with pink eye and were constantly passing out from malnutrition?

      You think McDonalds is employing people out of the goodness of their hearts, and that if employing them cost more they'd hire fewer people?

      They're hiring just as few people and giving them just as few hours at the lowest wage they can...right now.

      Because that's how capitalism works.

      "But the traitors will pretend / that it's gettin' near the end / when it's beginning" P. Ochs

      by JesseCW on Tue Oct 15, 2013 at 12:27:52 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  re: "low skill" (10+ / 0-)

      Go give this diary a read, and say it's "low skill". I'd go nuts if I had one of those jobs, especially during the rush periods.  And really, nothing justifies poverty wages. Not even a so-called "low-skill" job.

      "He who fights monsters should see to it that he himself does not become a monster. And if you gaze for long into an abyss, the abyss gazes also into you."

      by Hayate Yagami on Tue Oct 15, 2013 at 12:29:46 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  They've survived numerous wage increases (11+ / 0-)

      When I enterd the adult workforce the minimum wage was $2.30. That would be equivalent to 9.15/hour now. If flipping burgers adn baggind fries was worth $9.15 (in current dollars) then, why is it worth so much less now?

      “Texas is a so-called red state, but you’ve got 10 million Democrats here in Texas. And …, there are a whole lot of people here in Texas who need us, and who need us to fight for them.” President Obama

      by Catte Nappe on Tue Oct 15, 2013 at 12:31:35 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Your assumptions are outdated just like McD's... (9+ / 0-)

      ...business model at the expense of the public and harm of the employees. The fast food industry was built in a time when only kids worked at minimum wage which was designed to prevent outright slave wages but not designed to support an adult. Min wage was never designed to be a long term wage. Even 16 year olds who a fast food company wanted to retain were given quickly given raises over min wage because they became more valuable and retention was not achieved at the min. The low wage labor pool was relatively small and there were jobs available so good min wage workers could move on to a better paying job with ease then.

      Today both demographics and the economy are so radically different than when min wage laws were enacted that the economic equation is no longer operable.

      The min. wage worker pool is massive today and includes far more skilled, talented and valuable workers - adults.  There are no  economic incentives to profit makers to raise wages on even excellent min wage workers ever because there's so many other people waiting for a job and there are no alternative jobs for your excellent min wager earner to go.

      Even if a time limit was set for large employers to be allowed to keep an employee at min wage it wouldn't work because the very large low wage labor pool would make it preferable to simply fire anyone before they hit that limit even at the cost of training a replacement.  

      Your assumptions are anachronistic - just like our economy - and the people paying the cost of these errors are those least able to afford it and the companies - actually now multinational corporations rather than the local mom-and-pop burger joint - would still make huge profits with double digit ROI's even if their min were to be changed to $15/h.  

    •  My Taxes Pay For Social Programs Such As (7+ / 0-)

      food stamps. These programs are needed by low wage workers who are not paid a livable wage by their employers. Since they don't get paid a livable wage, these low wage workers must rely on government services that my tax dollars pay for - therefore, my tax dollars ARE subsidizing Walmart et al. Raising the wages of low wage workers leads to hiring fewer of them? Source that comment please. In addition, wages are only ONE of many things that go into the price of goods and services. Other things, such as the cost of renting/owning a building, electricity, advertising, etc. go into pricing products - not just wages. Does Walmart raise prices every time their electric bill increases? I strongly doubt it. Finally, if Walmart can consciously increase their advertising budget, and their transportation budget, and their CEO bonus budget, etc. based on profits, they can damn well do the same with their payroll budget for paying their non-management employees a livable wage.

    •  Here's the problem you're missing (5+ / 0-)

      WE, the taxpayers, are subsidizing McDonalds and other low wage employers by ensuring that their workers aren't starving, living in the street, or unable to get health care because even full time wages aren't enough to keep body and soul together.  

      Workers need to be paid more so they can sustain decent lives for themselves and their families without being subsidized by taxpayers which means that the minimum wage must be raised by a lot.  They're still going to need workers because of the nature of the business they're in, but those employees would now be able to afford to live and EVEN BUY THE PRODUCTS THEY MAKE (like a McDonalds meal).

      Propping up low wage workers with public assistance lets employers off the hook and provides what amounts to a business subsidy directly from the taxpayers.

      Nobody who works at a job should be poor.  Nobody.

      There already is class warfare in America. Unfortunately, the rich are winning.

      by Puddytat on Tue Oct 15, 2013 at 12:58:27 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  No, they can't hire fewer of them (0+ / 0-)

      Every retail business has an optimum number of employees below which service suffers; that number varies with the customer load.  When I worked fast food many decades ago, it took a minimum of five people to run the place: two on the grill, two on the counter, and one on the fryers and drinks.  You could do it with four, but it was going to slow things down.  

      Things have definitely changed since then, but there is still a minimum crew size for effective operation at a given customer load.  I have no doubt most fast food restaurants are already running at or near that number.

      •  Re (0+ / 0-)

        Higher minimum wages make automation more attractive.

        I'm sure there are many machines that aren't economical at $8/hr that are at $15.

        For example, a Panera Bread I go to installed kiosks where the customer keys in their own order. No muss, no fuss, no wrong order, it just does it for you and even remembers past orders (and replaces front line workers).

        Raising minimum from $8-ish to $15 is tantamount to begging business owners to install as many of these kiosks as humanly possible.

        (-5.50,-6.67): Left Libertarian
        Leadership doesn't mean taking a straw poll and then just throwing up your hands. -Jyrinx

        by Sparhawk on Thu Oct 17, 2013 at 07:54:44 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Was wondering when you were going to chime in (0+ / 0-)

          Stanley tools trained their workers to use automated machines. Later they moved to China and stopped using the automation because of cheap labor. When I go to the supermarket the self checkout almost always fucks up, requiring me to wait for a store clerk to come over. As a result I go to the cashier whenever I can, provided they have one on duty.....

    •  McDonalds would be out of business (0+ / 0-)

      They wouldn't want that.  So they will pay enough so workers can live on their wages, afford to buy their products.    If everyone else paid at least that, and also higher wages hinged on the MINWAGE, McDonalds would have MUCH MORE DEMAND.

      So would hire even MORE people.   Remember Henry Ford?  Paid his workers enough to afford to buy one of the cars they made for him.  He's responsible for creating the middle class because other employers followed his lead.

      And everybody made money!    Yes, we do have to do something about the high cost of health care.   Be patient.  Obamacare II, "Medicare for All" with payroll deductions lower than insurance premiums (with their 18 pct markup) will be LESS than it is now.   At higher wages, people can afford their own health care.

      When the min wage kept up with purchasing power, years ago, I managed to put myself through college.  That isn't possible today.  Yet profits have NEVER been so high!   Corporations whine too much.

    •  Fast Food Restaurants vs. A Living Wage (0+ / 0-)

      Having worked for various fast food places during my youth, both as a line worker as well as in management, it is my opinion that they all could pay a much higher wage than they are at present.  Would that entail raising prices to consumers a little?  Probably.  Would that mean a small decrease in shareholder profits?  Probably.  But neither of the above measures should have any effect on the number of workers they use, or may have need for in the future.  Look at other industries.  One of the big box stores (I forgot their name, please forgive) pays its workers a decent, living wage, plus a decent benefit package.  And they haven't lost any business, in fact their sales actually went up, because people preferred them to other big box stores.  They are happy with their business model.

      I believe we are way overdue on making these changes happen.  As pointed out, it benefits all of us as taxpayers because that is less we will have to subsidize through social safety net programs.  It benefits employers in the long run as they will have less turnover, which in turn means lower training costs and increased efficiency and productivity.

    •  I think it does make sense (0+ / 0-)

      These corporations profit off of the labor of low wage people.  If they hire less people, they make less money.  Keep in mind that the CEO of McDonalds made over 28 million in 2008, and the company itself makes over 5 billion in profits each year.  In my opinion, it seems shameful to profit off of the labor of people by paying them such a low wage that they qualify for social welfare.

      I read somewhere else that if they simply raised the price of a taco or a hamburger by .25 cents, it would more than pay for the wage increase.  Most people wouldn't notice the difference.  

      Part of the attraction of fast food is the idea that it is not only fast, but cheap.  I don't know if you've noticed this, but last time I bought my kids a fast food meal, I noticed it isn't cheap anymore anyway.  If they can't pay their workers a decent wage, I don't see why I need to go to those places.  The food isn't healthy, isn't inexpensive anymore, and the people aren't paid fairly.

    •  Why hire fewer? (0+ / 0-)

      Make less profit .
      How much more per burger would be required is the question.

      How much profit is enough?

    •  In Michigan (0+ / 0-)

      And maybe elsewhere by now, Food Stamp recipients can use their EBT cards at.... Wait for it.....

      McDonalds!

      Several fast food businesses in a few states lobbied hard for the ability to accept EBT. So yes, McDonalds is partially subsidized by food stamps.

      "The mind of a bigot is like the pupil of the eye; the more light you pour upon it, the more it will contract." Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr.

      by SNFinVA on Thu Oct 17, 2013 at 07:37:09 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  The point is that (0+ / 0-)

      these businesses are not paying their way.  They reap all the benefits of taxpayer social programs that give them a workforce while the taxpayers foot the bill.  It's likely they also get all sorts of tax breaks on top of all of this.  This is a classic example of big business disproportionately getting the benefits of government without justly compensating their workers or government through paying higher (more equitable) taxes.

      •  We have government of by and for too big to fail (0+ / 0-)

        international corporations.  Our ruling class consists of major stockholders and executives of too big to fail international corporations.  The main point of government is to serve the interests of the nation's ruling class. When there is monarchy, government primarily serves the interests of the monarch, who may or may not be intelligent enough to see that it is in his enlightened self-interest to have reasonably healthy and prosperous subjects.

    •  Higher wages destroying jobs is FICTION! (0+ / 0-)

      Compare Wisconsin to Minnesota

    •  Um, McDonalds could make 1.2 billion LESS Per Yr. (0+ / 0-)

      & assumedly these workers would not need tax-subsidies.

      Um. Duh?

      Corporate entities exist at the pleasure of the STATE, which is ALL of US.

      We should be able to nudge them back into 'the social compact'.

    •  Oh, Furthermore, McDonalds (And Everyone Else) (0+ / 0-)

      are ALREADY OPERATING at an absolute Bare-Minimum # of workers.

      You cannot open the franchise for business if you have less than say, 5 people.

  •  While right attacks workers for getting aid (5+ / 0-)

    We sane people see this as a problem of corporations exploiting huge power advantages to pay workers super-low wages and having the public pay for any poverty-related consequences.

    Our nation's right wing sees this as a reason to attack there being aid in the first place, and the workers who get it secondly.

    They don't want the problem that you & I see to be fixed;  the problem they want fixed is that poor people aren't made to suffer enough.

  •  Please engage your brain here, people. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    kck
    Like Walmart, McDonald's and Taco Bell and Domino's are profiting directly off of government programs for low-income people.
    This is a total non sequitur.  These companies' employees would be pulling the same (most likely more) amount of government benefits if they were not employed by the companies in question.

    Government benefits don't help these companies at all, only their employees.  Wages seek to the value of labor, not some idealized worker comfort zone.

    If all government benefits went away tomorrow, these same companies would be able to pay even less as an even larger group of people would be competing for the same jobs just to avoid starvation.

    •  Of course the companies benefit (13+ / 0-)

      Gov't benefits means that workers can afford to keep working there despite not earning a living wage, and thus their wages can be kept low.  This gives these companies a competitive price advantage against any restaurants or other food providers who pay their workers a more reasonable wage.  It can help to boost their profits and artificially keep their prices low to give them more business.

      •  It's not just that, but "Welfare to work" means (5+ / 0-)

        that many single mothers are forced to work a certain number of hours.

        Oh, and the employers get fat tax credits for hiring people on welfare.

        Which means their labor is almost free to the employer...and they HAVE to work or else lose all benefits and wind up having their kids seized.

        We used to honestly name that social status in this country.

        "But the traitors will pretend / that it's gettin' near the end / when it's beginning" P. Ochs

        by JesseCW on Tue Oct 15, 2013 at 12:42:20 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Subsidized child care frees parents to go (6+ / 0-)

      work at McDonalds.

      Subsidized healthcare means McDonalds gets workers without pink eye without having to pay the cost of that treatment.

      Subsidized food and housing aid means McDonalds doesn't even have to pay their employees enough to afford food and a place to live.

      The sickest part of it all is that modern "Welfare to Work" laws Clinton ( A Southern Governor) passed require that these workers - many single mothers - must take some job no matter how shitty and poorly compensated in order to keep getting their benefits.

      So now everyone from Walgreens to Wal Mart to McDonalds is getting bargain basement labor in the form of workers who have to take a fraction of a living wage or else get their goddamn kids thrown into foster care when they become homeless.

      "But the traitors will pretend / that it's gettin' near the end / when it's beginning" P. Ochs

      by JesseCW on Tue Oct 15, 2013 at 12:40:30 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  What's your complaint here? (0+ / 0-)
         Subsidized child care frees parents to go work at McDonalds.

        Subsidized healthcare means McDonalds gets workers without pink eye without having to pay the cost of that treatment.

        Subsidized food and housing aid means McDonalds doesn't even have to pay their employees enough to afford food and a place to live.

        We're at labor force levels we haven't seen in decades.  There hasn't been a smaller pool of workers (as a percentage) in living memory.

        Even if we abolished the "welfare to work" requirement, these workers would be in the same situation benefit-wise... just minus the income from their job, that the employer provided.

        •  You believe the purpose of Government is to compel (0+ / 0-)

          people to work for the lowest possible wage in order to maximize corporate profit?

          If we did away with Clintons compulsory low wage scheme, employers would have to increase wages to get workers.

          That "additional income" often isn't more than pocket change after a person has to pay for transportation and the like, and many would choose to forgo it and spend more time raising their own children rather than be abused in the workplace.

          That's why the requirement exists.

          "But the traitors will pretend / that it's gettin' near the end / when it's beginning" P. Ochs

          by JesseCW on Wed Oct 16, 2013 at 09:05:18 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Yes, we have governfment of by and for too big to (0+ / 0-)

            fail international corporations. Government serves primarily the interests of nation's ruling class. Our ruling class is major stockholders and executives of too big to fail international corporations.

    •  "If All Government Benefits Went Away Tomorrow (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      wasatch, Puddytat

      these same companies would be able to pay even less, as an even larger group of people would be competing for the same jobs just to avoid starvation." WRONG!! There would be more people out on the street stealing, and more people out on the street pan handling, and the charitable organizations (Salvation Army, etc.) would be overrun with hundreds more destitute people. Why do you think government stepped in (during the early 20th century) to help provide assistance that had previously been supplied only by charities?  Because the charities COULD NOT handle all the poor people, and the societal costs (i.e. increases in crime, etc.) were unacceptable to citizens. At some point, most people with a minimum of brains realize that competing for jobs at starvation/slave wages is a losing proposition  - so they don't do it. They do what I stated above  (i.e.  steal, pan handle, or rely on charity/family members).

    •  Agreed. Regardless of the advantages of raising... (0+ / 0-)

      ...min wage and the fact that overall jobs do not decrease and prices do not increase as a result of raising the min wage, the fundamental problem remains for the labor pool for min wage jobs which is that it's too large and is growing. Rapidly.

      Yes, min wage should be raised. But all kinds of other policies need to radically change. Yesterday.

      The crisis being experienced by adults working for min wage and the massive number of working poor is going to worsen over the next 20 years. Worse, it will decay at an accelerated pace. And the machinery that is preventing responsible government is only getting better and is itself globalizing.

      Focus on min wage is fine - it may even be life saving. But only in the sense that putting your hands over a shot gun wound to put pressure on a busted artery is life saving for a while.

      •  Correction: (0+ / 0-)

        when the minimum wage is raised baby step style.. a $1.50 raise over three years or whatever the lame plan is, it does not lead to job loss.

        however, IF the min wage was raised to where it actually needs to be it would certainly lead to job loss.

        baby steps = FAIL.

        "The 1% don't want SOLUTIONS; they've worked very hard the last four decades to get conditions the way they are now".

        by Superpole on Thu Oct 17, 2013 at 07:10:52 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  We need lots of cost/benefit analysis on support (0+ / 0-)

        for bottom half of socioeconomic heap.  I suspect we need negative population growth--in spite of right-wing objections to sex education and birth control.  Maybe forcing youth of the poor to live like monks and nuns--very well chaperoned in separate sex boarding schools from shortly before adolescence until they can be placed in jobs making a living wage, might slow population growth and be acceptable to the right wing. Also living like that not only reduces breeding, it also should be somewhat cheaper than individual housing in something like efficiency apartments.

    •  They also directly benefit (0+ / 0-)

      In a way that many overlook:

      EBT (or food stamps, if you prefer)

      EBT can be used at some fast food chains (I'm pretty sure that YUM!Brands lobbied hard for the privilege)in some states.

      http://abcnews.go.com/...

      So not only are these companies not paying employees a living wage, but they are also making sure that they don't lose those same working poor as customers.

      Some might call that double-dipping.

      "The mind of a bigot is like the pupil of the eye; the more light you pour upon it, the more it will contract." Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr.

      by SNFinVA on Thu Oct 17, 2013 at 07:21:54 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  I weep at the idea that people doing that (8+ / 0-)

    "American Dream" thing hate the government that helps them to get rich on the backs of workers who depend upon Government.

    I wonder: is this a slavery mentality? I think it is.

    The "Shot heard 'round the world" is now known as the "Pinochet Ricochet". --commonmass

    by commonmass on Tue Oct 15, 2013 at 11:59:49 AM PDT

  •  "Figure 2" needs one more column (4+ / 0-)

    Company profits. I fully expect that their profit far surpasses the subsidy totals, but I'm on my lunch break and can't look it up right now. That'd put the lie to their "can't afford higher wages" line.

    "He who fights monsters should see to it that he himself does not become a monster. And if you gaze for long into an abyss, the abyss gazes also into you."

    by Hayate Yagami on Tue Oct 15, 2013 at 12:17:02 PM PDT

    •  I suspect that as well. (3+ / 0-)

      What the RW trolls in this topic don't understand is that many, many people are getting wealthy from the taxpayer-subsidized workforce of these places.

      Check out the executive compensation.  Check out the dividends paid out.  It probably overwhelms a marginal raise in pay that the workers deserve.

      Corporations used to share profits with the workers who make them successful.  Now they just keep all of the money for their executives and shareholders and let the public pick up the tab for the workers.

      you don't need a weatherman to know which way the wind blows

      by Dem Beans on Tue Oct 15, 2013 at 01:32:36 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  In other words if we raised the minimum (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Amber6541, wasatch, gerrilea, spacecadet1

    wage we wouldn't have as much debt because we wouldn't have as many people needing government assistance. But then the people who are against social programs won't agree to raising the minimum wage either. Rolls eyes. I enjoy your labor diaries Laura. Thank you!

    "Disappointment is anger for wimps," -Dr. Gregory House

    by freakofsociety on Tue Oct 15, 2013 at 12:43:45 PM PDT

  •  should little caesars (0+ / 0-)

    be $225 million? because that would keep with the pattern on the graph a lot better than $125

    The Senate has no guts. The House has no brains.

    by gossamer1234 on Thu Oct 17, 2013 at 07:04:56 PM PDT

  •  OK, AND.....? (0+ / 0-)

    how is it any sort of news that big, profitable corporations are scamming the government for subsidies, tax breaks, tax deferrals, corporate offshoring, etc?

    it's not news.

    next, what are the democrats in congress going to do about this????

    "The 1% don't want SOLUTIONS; they've worked very hard the last four decades to get conditions the way they are now".

    by Superpole on Thu Oct 17, 2013 at 07:07:06 PM PDT

  •  I'd like to see a third column added... (0+ / 0-)

    Average annual profits of these companies.

  •  a powerful argument for increasing minimum wage (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Iberian
  •  this form (0+ / 0-)

    of socialism is fine with the cons and their corporate cronies, why raise the minimum wage when you can have the 99% help pay a livable wage.

  •  depends on your point of view.. consider: (0+ / 0-)

    Romney saying:

    " I can't believe pizza made all this" as he marveled at Papa John's private 18 hole golf course..

    so much warping of what this country used to be..

    may we have the strength and perseverance to overcome.

  •  include a profits column in this graph (0+ / 0-)

    There should be a annual profits column next to the public assistance provided to employees column. Just an idea.

    Boycott comment signatures.

    by brainpicnic on Thu Oct 17, 2013 at 07:35:56 PM PDT

  •  One of the many reasons (0+ / 0-)

    I no longer do "socially responsible" mutual funds is because they all have creepy predatory corps like Darden and Yum! among their offerings.  

    (And no, I no longer do mutual funds at all.)

    Dogs from the street can have all the desirable qualities that one could want from pet dogs. Most adopted stray dogs are usually humble and exceptionally faithful to their owners as if they are grateful for this kindness. -- H.M. Bhumibol Adulyadej

    by corvo on Thu Oct 17, 2013 at 07:48:41 PM PDT

  •  Fast food places are like polluters (0+ / 0-)

    These places with their high-sodium, high calorie, high cholesterol processed food crap not only cost us who knows how much in added health care expenses and lost productivity for obesity and related diseases,

    They underpay workers and foist those costs directly onto society.

    They're like polluters that get to dump their waste on public lands for free. They let other people pay the costs of their shoddy products and sleezy employment practices.

  •  As a libertarian / conservative (0+ / 0-)

    This is the type of argument that I can get on board with (that these companies are essentially forcing me to pay for their employees living costs).

    You'll never sell me on giving higher wages to unskilled labor because of the 'everyone deserves a living wage' argument (which I'm not here to argue about at the moment!)

    But I absolutely can get on board for not having money taken out of my pocket because these companies aren't paying their workers enough to keep them off of assistance programs.

  •  That is outrageous. (0+ / 0-)

    Since they believe in Capitalism, why not abide by the rules of Capitalism and not take any public dollars?

  •  US subsidising US food corps (0+ / 0-)

    Horrible. Were it not for the fact that these slaves....well what else would you call those working at any of the "businesses" listed....had the ability like some of the servants in Newport RI during the gilded age. At one house, all the staff peed in the soup, vomited in the main course, and added certain other things to the dinner for all the exalted guests. Only near the end, when the slaves were supposed to clear, did one come out and say "Well I hope you enjoyed drinking my piss. Your main course had our vomit and turds in it. Enjoy!". Needless to say, it ruined the dinner party. HA HA HA !!!!!!

  •  Ah, I see my confusion now. (0+ / 0-)

    I thought it was the "free market" philosophy that corporations were always yammering about, but it was actually the "freeloader market" they wanted all along. Things make so much more sense now!

    Man's capacity for justice makes democracy possible, but man's inclination to injustice makes democracy necessary. - Reinhold Niebuhr

    by penelope pnortney on Tue Mar 24, 2015 at 02:30:05 PM PDT

    •  Free market as per Friedman requires mgt to obe... (0+ / 0-)

      Free market as per Friedman requires mgt to obey laws, operate in accordance with societal norms of ethics. Competition was to be open and fair, free of fraud and deception. 1970 NYT interview with him.

  •  So, why no "poverty tax"? (0+ / 0-)

    Why don't we tax these companies to pay for the public assistance that they are forcing us to subsidize? Either they pay their employees a living wage, or we tax them to make up the difference!

  •  It was one of the infamous Koch brothers who sa... (0+ / 0-)

    It was one of the infamous Koch brothers who said "if a corporation supports minimum wage they are traitors to free enterprise". That is part of the Koch bros fight against livable wages.

  •  I think Republican members of Congress should be (0+ / 0-)

    made to make up the difference in the pay of these companies out of their own salaries since they are so definite in their blocking of any bill that would raise minimum wage.  Screw the GOP and their ilk.

  •  How about a tax on gross revenues to recover al... (0+ / 0-)

    How about a tax on gross revenues to recover all payouts, doubled for the aggravation and legal costs as well. 2nd yr triple for aggravation, and so on.

  •  How much is that hamburger?? (0+ / 0-)

    Factor in food stamps to workers, foreign investment tax exemptions, and other forms of government subsidies, it becomes evident that the fast food and agricultural industries are receiving corporate welfare benefits that benefit them at public cost.

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